How to get your RIW or RSW Card in 3 easy steps

GoRail RIW RSW Card Services

The trick is to get GoRail to manage the complicated process for you.

If you’re like most rail workers, the thought of spending hours on a computer trying to follow the instructions to get your RIW or RSW Card fills you with dread. You’d prefer to be doing the job you’ve been hired for, not working out where to upload the dozens of documents you’ve collected.

But, you also know that without an RIW or RSW Card you won’t be starting work in the rail network at all…

This is where GoRail comes in.

In 3 easy steps, you can get your RIW or RSW Card and get to work – because we take care of all the online stuff for you.

  1. Simply complete the application form with your details, send us a copy of your valid identification and a passport size photo. We will navigate the RIW/RSW system and set you (or your employees) up in preparation for the next step.
  2. Gather your medical, all of your certifications and your job role information and email them to us. We’ll take the hassle and frustration out of the whole process by uploading it all for you, so you can focus on the rail industry skills that really matter.
  3. Relax, the hard part is done! You can now wait patiently to receive your RIW or RSW Card in the mail or via email. How easy was that?

Terina and the team at GoRail made it easy to ensure our requirements were met to work on site. The communication and support for renewal means I don’t need to worry if any of my employees are out of date. They also simplify the process by providing 1-on-1 support if needed, which we all found very helpful.

Dominic Marrinan – Managing Director – DJM Concreting

Ready to go? Complete your Application form now.

Have multiple employees that need RIW cards?

For a small monthly fee, GoRail can manage the RIW or RSW account for your company. We will send you a report every month so you will never have workers off the job due to forgotten expiry dates. Plus, we can go through the whole set-up process for new employees, so you can concentrate on the parts of your business that you do best. WIN/WIN!

Still unsure if you need our help?

Click on the correct link to read the full details of how the RIW and RIW process works, or skip down to the FAQs.

The RIW portal can be a challenging site to navigate at times but with the help and guidance provided by Terina it made the whole process that much easier. I have found Terina to be very professional and she always goes that extra mile in providing assistance. I would highly recommend the GoRail service to anyone that is trying to navigate the RIW portal.

Francesco Turco – Corrosion Protection Team Leader – Mondo

Mondo Power use GoRail RIW Card services


What is RIW?

The Rail Industry Worker (RIW) Program is a national competency management framework for rail workers across Australia.

Owned by the Australian Railway Association (ARA), the RIW Program helps to make sure that Rail Organisations can easily see that workers meet the requirements to work safely. The RIW Program does this by keeping an electronic record of workers medical fitness, as well as their records of compliance with training and education.

The following Rail Network Operators require workers to have a valid RIW Card before working in the Rail Network:

  • Australian Railway Association (ARA)
  • Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC)
  • South Australian Department of Planning Transport & Infrastructure (DPTI)
  • Transport for NSW (TfNSW)
  • Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM)
  • Queensland Rail (QR)
  • The Public Transport Authority of Western Australia (PTA WA)
  • V/Line
  • John Holland Rail

Workers must have a valid RIW Card, plus have the necessary qualifications, competencies and job roles to work in the rail network.

CLICK HERE to find out more about the RIW Program.

What is RSW?

The Rail Safety Worker (RSW) is the Pegasus rail industry solution, which complies with Rail Safety National Law.

Similar to RIW in providing Rail Network Operators with transparent access to worker medical, competency and job role records, the RSW services the following RNOs:

  • Aurizon
  • Transport for NSW (TFNSW) – only for certain projects and Principal Contractors, as listed below:
  • TfNSW Projects/Cluster: Sydney Trains, Sydney Metro, NSW Trains, Martin Place Metro, Sydney Sydenham Junction, New Intercity Fleet (NIF), Central Station, Edgecliff TAP Upgrade, Transport Access Projects, Jane Street & Mulgoa Road Upgrade, Rooty Hill Station.
  • TfNSW Principal Contractors and Projects:
    • Downer: Sydney Growth Trains, Now Intercity Fleet (NIF) Project, and Transport Access
    • McConnell Dowell: JaneStreet & Mulgoa Road Upgrade
    • Leandlease/Southern Program Alliance: The Southern Program Alliance, Ballarat Line Upgrade, Blue Mountains Route Clearance and Gawler Rail Electrification Project
    • Laing O-Rourke: Central Station, Sydneham Station and North Shore Corridor Works
    • Novo Rail Alliance
    • NSW Government
    • Sydney Metro
    • Transport NSW Train Link
    • Transport Sydney Trains

CLICK HERE to find out more about the RSW Card.

What is the difference between RIW and RSW?
The difference between RIW and RSW is simply that you are required to hold one or both, and it is dependent on what rail network/s or project/s you will be working on.
What do I need to work within the rail corridor?

At a minimum, you will be required to hold the following:

  • Valid RIW and/or RSW Card
  • Construction Card (CPCCOHS1001) Prepare to Work Safely in the Construction Industry
  • Approved Rail Medical: Category 1, 2 or 3 depending on what type of work you will be doing (if TfNSW, rail medical must be compliant to the TfNSW matrix)
  • Safely Access the Rail Corridor (TLIF2080 or TLIF0020)
  • Any Rail Network Operator specific inductions

Network Operators have specific competencies and qualification that need to be attained based on the type of work (job roles) you will be performing.

Use the links below to view the RIW Roles Matrices:

RIW Competency Matrix

RSW Competency Matrix


Where can I get my Medical done?

Click the below link to see the list of Approved Medical Practitioners for both RIW and RSW Cards.

Authorised Health Professionals

Do I really need an RIW or RSW Card to work in the rail network?

Yes. By law, every person working in the rail network, in any capacity, must be able to provide proof of competency.

The RIW and RSW programs and the associated cards hold your proof of competency and eligibility to work in the rail network.

How many days does it take to get my card sent out to me?

Upon successful registration, your physical card can take up to 10 days to arrive.

You will normally have access to your virtual card and cardholder permit within a few days.

I need to start work tomorrow, is it too late for me to apply for my card now?

Generally, yes, it would be too late.

It will take a non-guaranteed minimum of 24 hours to generate an approved profile – and this will only occur if you can satisfy ALL mandatory requirements immediately AND use the Fast-Track option which incurs additional fees.

It is not possible to attain a physical card in this time but it is possible to receive a virtual card after 24 hours processing time and meeting the above mentioned requirements.

Can’t I just take all my documents and certificates to work on site on the first day?

No. You must have a valid RIW or RSW card to work in the rail corridor.

Can I start work if I haven’t received my card yet?

In most cases, yes.

If you have your virtual card and any approved job roles assigned, then you MAY be able to commence work. You will need to confirm with your Employer as they will need to clarify with their Contract Owner or Network Rail Operator contact if this is acceptable.

How much does it cost for me to do the RIW/RSW Card application on my own?

Please check the RIW and RSW websites for up to date pricing structures.

RIW: $275 + GST – confirm on RIW Card website – new pricing model begins 28 June 2021

RSW: $100 + GST  – confirm on RSW Card website

What do I do if my RIW Card has expired?

Contact your current Employer.

Only Employers can pay for card renewals or replacements; there are applicable renewal fees.

If your card has expired and you are not employed with an RIW/RSW registered company, you will need to wait until you are and then the renewal process can happen.

Will GoRail let me know if my qualifications or certifications have expired?

GoRail will provide Companies with expiration reports on a regular basis if this service is selected.

The RIW and RSW systems will alert ALL REGISTERED CARDHOLDERS of upcoming expiries at 12, 4 and 1 week intervals and on the day of expiry (if correct cardholder status is selected).

You can monitor these at any time via your personal myRIW or RSW Worker accounts.

Are you able to give me advice on what qualifications I need for my job?

We will provide advice where we can, but it is always suggested that you confirm with your Employer, Contract Owners and/or Network Rail Operators what you require. The ARA and Rail Network Operators have job role competency matrices that must be adhered to and determine what you must hold to perform your work.

You can find links to the Matrices under the FAQ titled: What do I need to work within the rail corridor?

Can I do my Rail Induction with GoRail?

You can complete your SARC or RISI with GoTrain. For all Network Rail Operators there are specific inductions that they require you to do in addition to the SARC/RISI. We can provide advice as to how to access these for completion.

CLICK HERE to see the GoTrain training calendar.

I don’t have an ABN, can I still get an RIW or RSW Card?

Yes, you can still get a card. However, you CANNOT work on the rail network until your card is listed with an RIW/RSW registered company or as a sole trader that holds an ABN.

My card has been lost, stolen or is damaged. How do I get a new one?

Only your Employer can request a replacement card – replacements fees are applicable.

You will still be able to access your virtual card and this can be used until your new one arrives.

Can my Company receive physical cards on behalf of our workers?

Yes, you can request the cards be sent to your company address instead of directly to the cardholder.

Can our Company have more than one RIW/RSW Company Administrator?

Yes, additional users can be added after initial registration is completed.

Our Company head office is in Brisbane. Can we have the cards delivered elsewhere?

Yes. Multiple Company postal addresses can be added after initial registration is complete. You will then be able to select which location you would like them posted to.

Our Company would like to register a number of new cardholders in the RIW/RSW program. Can we use the same “generic or shared” email address for all of them?

No, each cardholder must have their own unique email address.

When do I need to provide a photo for my card?

You must provide your photo at the time of requesting registration.

Registration cannot be completed until your photo has been submitted to RIW/RSW.

Incomplete registration = no card!

The RIW/RSW guidelines request that you provide a clear, focused and good quality photo of yourself.

This includes:

  • plain white or light grey background
  • no shadows or reflections – appropriate lighting to show natural skin tones
  • directly face the camera
  • eyes open, mouth closed and hair off the face so that the edges of your face are visible
  • glasses are not to be worn
  • close range, showing from the top of shoulders and up
  • in JPEG or PNG format
  • no larger that 4MB
  • can be taken using your mobile device

Want to speak to someone first?

We’re here to take your call.

Dial 1300 698 158 and our friendly team will answer your questions and get your RIW/RSW Card application started today. Alternatively, send us an email at: or complete the enquiry form and we will get back to you soon.

Send an enquiry now: